En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Wednesday - May 19, 2010

From: The Colony, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Water Gardens
Title: Plants for area around a fountain in full sun near Dallas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I'm seeking advice on what I can plant around the base of a fountain, in full sun, that can tolerate the fountain water splash/spray. I'm seeking something that can be maintained to a maximum height of 24-30 inches or so. My preference is a blooming or tropical type of plant, but realizing the unusual setting, will consider anything. Another consideration is that it does not attract bees, as this garden is near an entry door. Thank you in advance for your consideration. I live north of Dallas in Denton County.

ANSWER:

If the soil around the fountain is damp, or even better, really wet, you could use a fern such as Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern).  I could guarantee you that no bees would be attracted to it since it isn't a flowering plant.  Another plant for very moist soil that would not attract bees is Equisetum hyemale (scouringrush horsetail).

Here are several plants that tolerate moist soil, are within your preferred size range, and grow in full sun.  They will attract butterflies and perhaps an occasional bee, but they wouldn't be especially attractive to the bees.

Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed)

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius (Berlandier's sundrops)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower)

Oenothera speciosa (pinkladies)

Salvia lyrata (lyreleaf sage)

You can look for more possibilities on our Texas-North Central Recommended page.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to limit the search to fit your criteria (e.g.,select 'Sun..' from LIGHT REQUIREMENT and 'Moist' from SOIL MOISTURE).

Here are photos of the plants above from our Image Gallery:


Osmunda cinnamomea

Dodecatheon pulchellum

Asclepias tuberosa

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius

Lobelia cardinalis

Oenothera speciosa

Salvia lyrata

 

 

 

 

More Water Gardens Questions

Plant ID at the Wildflower Center from Austin
June 18, 2012 - I was at the Wildflower Center today and loved the green plants with delicate white flowers that were in both clay pots in front of the auditorium. Please let me know the name of the plants.
view the full question and answer

Winter tank pond care in Austin Texas
November 09, 2010 - Suggestions for winterizing a water garden in Austin Texas. Water contained in a 60 gallon aluminum horse tank. Garden contains papyrus, horsetail and water lily. There are no fish in the pond and no...
view the full question and answer

Tradescantia as a water plant
June 13, 2007 - I have a spiderwort plant, and when I found it at the nursery, it was in water by the pond plants, (I had no idea what kind of plant it was at the time) So I bought it, took it home, and repotted it w...
view the full question and answer

Plants for NY wetland yard
April 30, 2011 - We have standing water in our yard for the entire spring and sometimes summer if it's a rainy one. We dug a ditch and found that our yard has a natural spring, which explains a lot. I need to know ...
view the full question and answer

Plants for pavilion over fountain in Washington State
December 26, 2008 - I have a tall fountain in a 7 foot square which is surrounded by pavers. Inside the 7' square there is about a 2' mulched soil bed around the center fountain and an iron type pavilion that goes up h...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center